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Tampa Bay-Lakeland
Business Observer Tuesday, Jul. 2, 2019 5 months ago

Private equity firms buy prominent area-based restaurant brand

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Nord Bay Capital of Tampa buys Hooters of America from Miami-based H.I.G. Capital.

CLEARWATER — Nord Bay Capital of Tampa and its advisor, New York-based Tri-Artisan Capital Advisors, has closed on the acquisition of Hooters of America from H.I.G. Capital, a Miami-based private equity and alternative assets investment firm.

Financial terms were not disclosed and the selling entities will each retain a stake in the company, according to a statement. 

Clearwater-based Hooters of America is the franchisor and operator of more than 430 Hooters restaurants in 38 states and 27 countries.

“Hooters is an iconic global brand that has shown strong financial growth and development,” says William Pepper, principal of Nord Bay Capital in a statement. “With nine consecutive quarters of same-store sales growth and 13 consecutive quarters outperforming the casual dining bar and grill category, we see Hooters as a real jewel in the restaurant category.”

“The partnership with Nord Bay and TriArtisan comes at an ideal time for the company, bringing fresh partners with complementary skills and experience to support our next phase of growth,” adds Hooters of America CEO Terry Marks in the release. “Our core business is strong with a world-famous and differentiated brand, a first-rate management team and a loyal base of experienced franchisees. In addition, we are pleased with the early results of our new fast casual concept and plan additional openings later this year.”

Nord Bay Capital is a family office with an emphasis on direct and co-investments for middle-market opportunities. It focuses on established, non-cyclical companies with strong market positions and partners with management to grow and build brand value.

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